California Literary Review

Television

Revolution Recap: ‘The Stand’ (Season 1, Episode 11)

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March 26th, 2013

“The Stand” is simultaneously the type of episode Revolution needed to return with and the type of episode that really highlights its shortcomings. Like many episodes, it puts the vast majority of its marbles into a single sequence- this time being a dual Monroe helicopter attack on a resistance compound. It’s a mostly successful, well-done action scene, particularly for a network television show. However, the repeated use of heavy artillery makes me wonder if the show is going to backtrack from its use of more simplistic weapons. This is a shame, because reliance on muskets and swords was one of the series’ more unique features.

The Walking Dead Recap: “Prey” and “This Sorrowful Life” (Season 3, Episodes 14 and 15)

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March 25th, 2013

The last few episodes have unsteadily balanced a number of storylines whose interest is waning. Andrea finally chose a side, even as the Governor remained a static, iconic villain (he’s like one of those creepy clown punching bags – you hit him, he doesn’t stay down). Glenn and Maggie made up and provided a little, suspicious ray of sunshine in the midst of death and destruction. Rick waffled and moaned and still isn’t the hardass he tries to be. Michonne is still a frighteningly observant hard case.

Community Recap: ‘Economics of Marine Biology’ (Season 4, Episode 7)

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March 22nd, 2013

The sliver of optimism that built inside me after last week’s episode of Community has shriveled up and died. Community is not going to turn things around in its final death throes and Season 4 will forever be the Godfather Part III of one of the most creative and inspired series of the new millennium.

Community Recap: ‘Advanced Documentary Filmmaking’ (Season 4, Episode 6)

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March 15th, 2013

After a mediocre season (to put it nicely) so far, this week’s episode of Community was a slight return to form for the struggling comedy which has become almost without humor in what is likely to be its final season.

The Office Recap: ‘The Farm’ (Season 9, Episode 17)

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March 15th, 2013

Tonight is the episode of The Office that I’ve been waiting for: “The Farm.” This is the pilot for the defunct Dwight spin-off, the news of which led to the Internet being chock-full of references to the classic Simpsons episode, “The Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase.” When NBC decided not to pick up the show, the producers opted to re-purpose it into a conventional episode of The Office. And here we are.

SXSW Film Festival Day 5: Guns, Ghosts and Psychos

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March 13th, 2013

As a sign of how important SXSW has become across a variety of media, A&E premiered the pilot episode of its new series Bates Motel. Set in the present day, the series will be a prequel to Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpiece Psycho.

The Walking Dead Recap: “Arrow on the Doorpost” (Season 3, Episode 13)

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March 11th, 2013

We already know how the Governor functions, and we don’t need more evidence of his shortcomings as a human being. We don’t want Michonne to lose any of her badassery as she becomes more attached to Carl and Rick. We know Rick likes to play the hero. We didn’t need an entire episode to pound in these aspects of our characters.

Community Recaps: ‘Alternative History…’ and ‘Cooperative Escapism…’ (Season 4, Episodes 4 and 5)

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March 8th, 2013

Even before the season began, the show gained a reputation that would be hard to shake. Would liking Season 4 be based on its own merits or be residual effects from the obsessive fandom of the previous three years? Alternatively, would not liking Season 4 be based on the show’s quality or because of devotion to Harmon and knowledge of the behind-the-scenes conflicts?

The Walking Dead Recap: “Clear” (Season 3, Episode 12)

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March 4th, 2013

In last night’s episode of The Walking Dead, a happy little family took a delightful road trip. No, wait, this is the zombie apocalypse. Michonne, stone-faced as always, drives Rick’s dusty SUV while Rick rides shotgun and Carl perches in the backseat.

The Walking Dead Recap: “Home” and “I Ain’t a Judas” (Season 3, Episodes 10 and 11)

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February 25th, 2013

If there’s one thing The Walking Dead does well, it’s to remind us that in the zombie apocalypse, the real danger isn’t zombies. It’s us. Loyalties shift from day to day, power takes precedence over mercy, and everyone has guns.

Suits Recap: ‘War’ (Season 2, Episode 16)

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February 22nd, 2013

Finally, Mike reveals that that he never went to Harvard. Rachel slaps him across the face, and then, the two kiss. The series ends with a sex scene that is unusually explicit for the USA Network. Thus, we have been set up for the third season episodes, which are due to premier in summer 2013.

Suits Recap: ‘Normandy’ (Season 2, Episode 15)

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February 15th, 2013

Harvey realizes that there is evidence that the company accused of discriminating against female employees promoted one woman only after cancer left her unable to have children, removing the chance of future family concerns pulling her focus from work.

Community Recap: ‘Paranormal Parentage’ (Season 4, Episode 2)

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February 15th, 2013

Previous episodes like “Epidemiology” and “Horror Fiction in Seven Spooky Steps” have lampooned genre films and provided some of the series’ most memorable moments, “Paranormal Parentage” was just…boring. The story was subpar and the meta-references were practically winking at themselves. Is it possible to be nostalgic for something that aired less than a year ago?

The Office Recap: ‘Moving On’ (Season 9, Episodes 16)

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February 15th, 2013

If [Pam] chooses the home of Dunder Mifflin, it will appear like settling and provide a depressing ending to her character. One where she willingly gives up hope for a better, more interesting life in exchange for an eternity of monotony, which she actually complained about in the first episode of this season.

The Walking Dead Recap: “The Suicide King” (Season 3, Episode 9)

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February 11th, 2013

Meanwhile, back in the village, the citizens of Woodbury, once dressed in summery, shimmery clothing, gossiping about one another, and congratulating themselves on the state of their sunny little town, now fear for their very lives.

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